2012 March Madness South Region Preview & Predictions


2012 March Madness South Region Preview & Predictions

The South Region isn’t that strong and Kentucky definitely has the talent to make it through the region. There are a few upsets that I could see happening in the South Region as well in the 1st couple rounds. Continue reading our 2012 South Region preview to find out who we predict to make it out of the 2nd round of the 2012 March Madness tournament.

2012 March Madness South Region Predictions (2nd Round)

• #1 Kentucky Wildcats -25 vs. #16 Western Kentucky Hilltoppers +25

Kentucky Wildcats (32-2) aren’t going to have a problem advancing in the 2nd round over Western Kentucky (16-18). I watch WKU play Miss Valley State last night and they looked horrible for 35+ minutes of the game. -25 points is a lot to cover, so I’m laying off the point spread, but Anthony Davis and Doron Lamb will lead the Wildcats to a convincing 2nd round victory.

• #8 Iowa State Cyclones +1.5 vs. #9 Connecticut Huskies -1.5

Connecticut Huskies (20-13) are favoured over the Iowa State Cyclones (22-10) despite being a lower seed. The public will be on UCONN in this game, as the Huskies are defending National Champs. The Cyclones beat Baylor and Kansas this year already and I think the high powered Cyclones offence will win this game and advance to the 3rd round.

• #5 Wichita State Shockers -6.5 vs. #12 Virginia Commonwealth Rams +6.5

Wichita State (27-5) had a remarkable season and is led by Garrett Stutz (13.5 PPG & 8 RPG). Many remember the run VCU made to the Final Four last season, but that’s going to cost bettors. You may not have heard about the Shockers yet, but they’re one of the best teams in the nation. The offence is ranked 15th with 77.7 PPG, 28th with 38 RPG and 45th with 14.8 APG.

• #4 Indiana Hoosiers -6 vs. #13 New Mexico State Aggies +6

New Mexico State (26-9) destroyed the competition in the WAC conference tournament last week and many are picking the Aggies to upset the Indiana Hoosiers (25-8). Indiana and New Mexico are two top offences and if one team starts the game cold it could mean big trouble. I think the Hoosiers advance, but I’m on the Aggies by +6 as one of my top South Region bets.

• #6 UNLV Revels -5 vs. #11 Colorado Buffaloes +5

The Las Vegas Rebels are 26-8 on the season with big wins over North Carolina, Illinois and San Diego State. The Buffaloes are on a 4-game winning streak with wins over Utah, Oregon, California and Arizona in the Pac-12 tournament final. Colorado is hot, but I’m taking UNLV to advance in my bracket, as the Rebels are much better on offence than Colorado.

• #3 Baylor Bears -7 vs. #14 South Dakota State +6

The Baylor Bears (27-7) lost to Mizzou in the Big 12 conference tournament last week, but the Bears are a great team. I haven’t liked the play of Acy recently, but Perry Jones III is a beast and can win this game for his team. South Dakota State (27-7) hasn’t played a ranked opponent this year and although the team score 77.3 PPG on average they won’t win this game tomorrow.

• #7 Notre Dame Fighting Irish -2.5 vs. #10 Xavier Musketeers +2.5

Notre Dame (22-11) and Xavier (21-12) are two teams that are struggling right now. Neither team is going to make a deep run, but since they’re matched up against each other one of these underachieving teams will make the 3rd round. I’m betting on the Irish at -2.5 in this game, as Xavier has been extremely inconsistent. Tu Holloway can light it up for Xavier, but I like the Irish defence.

• #2 Duke Blue Devils -12 vs. #15 Lehigh Mountain Hawks +12

There isn’t much to say about this 2nd round match-up in the South Region. Duke Blue Devils (27-6) aren’t as strong as in years past, but there is no way they lose to the Mountain Hawks in the 2nd round. Take Duke to advance and although I think they cover the -12 point spread I’m not going to be betting the game.

2012 March Madness South Region Top Team

I don’t think that the South Region is that strong. There are a few great teams (Kentucky, Baylor & Duke) in the region, but I’m not sold on any of these teams yet. Kentucky lost to Vanderbilt in the SEC conference tournament and Duke lost to FSU in the semi-finals of the ACC conference tourney.

Baylor made it to the finals in the Big 12 tournament, but they lost to a high flying Mizzou team. Kentucky has the best talent in the South Region, but they need to get hungrier and play a full 40 minutes. The best team in the South is a toss-up between the Wildcats and Bears in my opinion and it will depend on what team wants it more this month. I have the Wildcats advancing to the Final Four in the 2012 March Madness tournament from the South Region.

2012 March Madness South Region Cinderella Teams

If #12 New Mexico State can get out of the 2nd round with a win over the Hoosiers they could make a run. The Aggies would play the winner of the Shockers vs. Buffaloes, which is a winnable game for New Mexico State. The two teams I have my eye on in the South Region this year are the Cyclones and Huskies.

Connecticut plays Iowa State in the 2nd round and the winner will most likely play Kentucky in the 3rd round. Kentucky is going to be a tough game, but the Cyclones and Huskies could beat the Wildcats. If UCONN or ISU beats Kentucky in the 3rd round look out because the team will be full on confidence and an extremely tough out in the Sweet Sixteen.

2012 March Madness South Region Best 2nd Round Match-Up

The one game I know that I can’t miss in the South Region in the 2nd round is the #8 Iowa State vs. #9 Connecticut game. Both of these teams have great offences and can put the ball into the basket. UCONN has better guard play and that could help them win the game, but I’m betting on the Cyclones.

Iowa State is led by 6’8” Royce White. White leads the Cyclones in scoring with 13.1 PPG, rebounds with 9.2 RPG and assists with 5.1 APG. If the Huskies shutdown White the Cyclones are in trouble. On the other hand, ISU needs to shutdown the guards on the Huskies as much as possible. UCONN doesn’t shoot the three that well and if they get down to ISU I think the Cyclones will be able to hang on without blowing the win.

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